Brigham Young University filed three separate lawsuits Tuesday challenging a ruling by the State Records Committee that an interview between a BYU police officer and a former leader of the Missionary Training Center accused of sexual assaulting a woman in the 1980s should be made public.
Lawyers for the private Provo university, which is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, wrote in the lawsuits that the school’s police department is not subject to Utah open-records laws — and argued the records committee erred in hearing the appeals of KUTV-Channel 2, MormonLeaks and Washington-based lawyer Corbin Volluz.
The assertion that the BYU Police Department is not subject to the state’s Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) is central to a pending lawsuit The Salt Lake Tribune filed in 2016, when the newspaper argued that the police force should be open to public records requests because it has “full-spectrum” law enforcement authority under state law. This means BYU officers may stop, search, arrest and use physical force against people, just as any other sworn officer in the state. But currently… (Read more…)